Another kind of insurance

Snow-covered debris--the house site, just behind the pile, already cleared and foundation blocks neatly stacked a day or two after the fire. (Photo: Bill Knoble)

Last Monday night an Amish neighbor’s house burned to the ground. By Tuesday evening, as I drove past on my way home from work, the debris had been cleared and piled or removed.

For the past week, I’ve followed the daily progress as dozens of men gather to work, their buggies parked in the yard between the house and the barn.

We dropped off some cookies and coffee–our small way of being a part of this remarkable community insurance policy.

The walls are up...one week after the fire.

Today, I snapped this photo (didn’t want to get too close because of the stricture against photographing Amish people) to show you what a week of neighborliness can accomplish.

Neighborliness is found in lots of communities. Often the best demonstrations of that coming together follow disasters–fire or flood or ice. Tell me about a special instance–or on-going practice–of neighborliness in your community.

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3 Comments on “Another kind of insurance”

  1. BRFVolpe says:

    As we “English” anguish about what we are certain are the most important problems of today, (e.g., upside-down mortgages and gas prices), stories like this help put our secular values in perspective. Thanks for this message-laden news.

  2. jeff says:

    Building permit issued? Did the lumber meet code?

    Regardless, The neighborliness for them is largely within their congregational community. For the rest of us, what does it take to disregard that first thought- insurance will take care of it or somebody will help out or as in my case, I don’t know them. Last Memorial day weekend a non-Amish neighbor half a mile away lost their house. I didn’t know them, not even their name, but did wonder about what could I do. I did not make an effort to do anything further although I knew the contractor who built an addition for them, (even spoke to him about the event), their address would have been on the tax records in the courthouse.

    You bring out a great point, and it extends not only to an event this severe. We should be better neighbors, the network created is invaluable too.

  3. OnewifeVetNewt says:

    Great story, Ellen.

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